Monday, November 23, 2009

X-Ray Spex - "Live At The Roundhouse London 2008" CD/DVD

It's been almost 30 years since they last played together, but charismatic front-woman Poly Styrene and her X-Ray Spex return on this well-recorded live document. Beginning with the feminist anthem "Oh Bondage Up Yours!", these well-regarded (and it's safe to say legendary) first-wave English punkers ratchet it up to '10' here. Styrene's instantly likable and unique vocals are cynical, snide, and nicely critical of plasticized consumerist culture, while the band's hopeful pop-punk stylings are accented by saxophone, which brings another unusual (but effective) element to the band's attack. "Warrior In Woolworth's" is a beauty, as is the self-explanatory "I Am A Cliche". This is punk rock firing on all cylinders, with message just as vital now as it was in 1979. One new song, "Bloody War", has much to say in it's brief 2+ minute existence, too. The live DVD is a pro-shot, multi-angle treasure showing the reverence and fun this band still inspires. Bravo, Poly and crew. It's a welcomed and well-worthy return. (Year Zero/Future Noise)

X-Ray Spex site

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